Announcing the Russell Walker CP, LP Emerging Leader Grant Program

Published in Orthotics & Prosthetics on February 01, 2022

updated 2/11/22

Grant ProgramOPGA and Össur are excited to partner together to offer the Russell Walker, CP, LP Emerging Leader Grant Program. The winner of the grant will be announced on Thursday, March 3 at 4:30 p.m. in the Össur booth #205 at the AAOP Annual Meeting.

Russell Walker, CP, LP was a compassionate leader at ProCare Prosthetics & Orthotics. Teaching was one of his strongest skills. While he was in pursuit of a teaching career, he discovered the O&P profession and in doing so, he found a career that suited him immensely. O&P allowed him to use his love of teaching and mentoring in a different manner, through developing residents. He particularly poured his knowledge and expertise into ProCare’s resident program. Through supporting students in hands-on patient care experiences, his knowledge and love for the profession spread to others entering the field. 

In August 2019, Rusty was diagnosed with Clear Cell Sarcoma, which originated in a tumor in his foot. The cancer caused Rusty to become a below-the-knee amputee. His coworker and previous resident developed his prosthesis and supported him through his 16-month healing journey. He adored the fact that one of his own residents helped him walk again. On December 26, 2020, Rusty passed away. He will always be remembered in the hearts and minds of his family, friends, and patients.  

To honor his impact on the O&P profession and its residents, Össur and OPGA are privileged to provide the Russell Walker Emerging Leader Grant. This grant program is designed to provide annual funding to a current O&P resident to attend and participate in two different events that are outside of the clinical setting but are highly important to the O&P profession and the patients it serves: 

  1. AOPA Policy Forum: This event gathers people from the profession to Washington D.C. for a two-day meeting, including one day of meetings with their state’s legislative contingency to advocate for better policies affecting O&P. 
  2. The Annual Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) Triathlon Challenge, held in San Diego: It is the mission of the CAF to provide opportunities and support to people with physical challenges, so they can pursue active lifestyles through physical fitness and competitive athletics. The CAF believes that involvement in sports at any level increases self-esteem, encourages independence, and enhances quality of life. 

The nomination period has closed. The winner of the Russell Walker Emerging Leader Grant will be announced at Academy

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